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GLIN==> Press release: 2008 Birds of the Great Lakes Seaway Trail Series Set through November

Title: Press release: 2008 Birds of the Great Lakes Seaway Trail Series Set through November
PRESS RELEASE: April 11, 2008 – use by April 19 or remove 5th paragraph below and adjust calendar list
Contact:  Peggy Morgia, Teresa Mitchell, Seaway Trail Foundation, Inc., 315-646-1000
2008 Birds of the Great Lakes Seaway Trail Series Set through November

Sackets Harbor, NY -- The 2008 Birds of the Great Lakes Seaway Trail is off to a flying start. The series organized by the Seaway Trail Foundation includes live birds, speakers from Audubon, The Nature Conservancy, Fort Drum, Flying WILD, the Roger Tory Peterson Institute of Natural History, the New York State Zoo, and the National Wild Turkey Federation; a guided walk at Black Pond; a photography presentation by Ian Coristine; and a Seaway Trail Discovery Center exhibit featuring the diverse bird species that favor the shoreline along the four large waters of the byway.
The Seaway Trail, designated one of America
s Byways and a National Recreational Trail, parallels the St. Lawrence River, Lake Ontario, Niagara River and Lake Erie in New York and Pennsylvania.
Project advisor and ornithologist Gerry Smith says,
The Seaway Trail coastal region is primed for attracting increasing numbers of birdwatchers interested in migratory songbirds, waterfowl, shorebirds, raptors and threatened, endangered and some rare species. This series will interest both serious and the backyard birders.” Smith, who is also Onondaga Audubon Society President, speaks on hawk watching and Derby Hill Bird Observatory on August 7.
Most of the programs will be held at the Seaway Trail Discovery Center in Sackets Harbor, NY. Check www.seawaytrail.com for program times. Floor-to-ceiling murals filled with birds adorn the rooms and hallways of the three-story, historic limestone building and provide the perfect backdrop for programs with live birds. On May 8th, it’s a turkey vulture, red-tailed hawk, and other birds of prey from the New York State Zoo at Thompson Park. On August 21 Master Falconer Rick West brings a falcon, raven, and owl to the Discovery Center.
The next program in the series is April 19th, when Horticulture Educator Sue Gwise of Cornell Cooperative Extension shares tips on how to landscape to attract hummingbirds.
Teachers will want to join the public at the April 24th program on the Birds of Braddock Bay by David Semple of the Bird Coalition of Rochester to receive Flying WILD materials and a discount for the July 2008 training session on the cross-curricular K-12 teaching program.
On May 29, birdwatchers and hunters alike will hear about the conservation and habitat enhancement work of the National Wild Turkey Federation.
On June 12th Audubon New York Director of Conservation and Science Dr. Michael Burger will talk about birds on the decline in New York with his program on Why A WatchList: The Imperiled Species of the Seaway Trail, New York State and the World.
On June 14 a combination program features a 10 am presentation at the Seaway Trail Discovery Center by The Nature Conservancy on the Birds of the Black Pond and a 2pm guided tour at the Black Pond Wildlife Management Area led by the Eastern Lake Ontario Dune Stewards.
On July 10 the series moves to the Clayton Opera House where photographer-pilot Ian Coristine will present his spectacular aerial photography titled A Bird’s Eye View of the Seaway Trail and the Birds of Grindstone Island.
On July 24 federal Fish & Wildlife naturalists will help visitors to the Seaway Trail interpretive center in Sackets Harbor discover that birdwatchers can access the Fort Drum military installation which is home to several grassland bird species.
After August programs by Smith and West, on September 18 Education Director Mark Baldwin from the Roger Tory Peterson Institute of Natural History, Jamestown, NY – an easy drive from the western New York stretch of the Seaway Trail - will help workshop attendees enhance their bird observation and nature journaling skills. The Peterson Institute is providing beautiful sketches and artwork by the famous American birder and field guide innovator for the Seaway Trail Discovery Center exhibit.
October 9th a retired Parks Canada park warden will answer the question is the Bald Eagle on the brink of recovery on the Seaway Trail in the 1000 Islands region of the byway.
The series concludes on November 6th with Audubon Science Christmas Bird Count Director Geoff LeBaron of Springfield, Massachusetts, speaking on the annual surveys that occur in more than 2,000 locations in the Americas, including a dozen Seaway Trail communities, and provide vital information to naturalists worldwide.
Audubon New York and the Important Bird Areas Program, the North Country Bird Club, the Bird Coalition of Rochester, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation have provided displays and informational materials for the exhibit at the Seaway Trail Discovery Center.
The 2008 bird theme series benefits the educational programming of the Seaway Trail Foundation that promotes travel and tourism-related economic development along the 518-mile freshwater shoreline of New York and Pennsylvania. Anyone purchasing a Seaway Trail Foundation membership - $25 for individuals, $35 for families, $100 for patrons - will receive free admission to all Seaway Trail events, unlimited visits to the Seaway Trail Discovery Center and a discount in the Discovery Center Gift Shop which has pre-cut and fabricated bluebird nestboxes for sale.
Sponsors of the 2008 Birds of the Great Lakes Seaway Trail include the Town of Hounsfield, Key Bank, National Grid, the New York State Department of Transportation, the Federal Highway Administration National Scenic Byway Program, the Roger Tory Peterson Institute of Natural History, the North Country Bird Club and the Bird Coalition of Rochester.
For more information, visit the Seaway Trail Discovery Center at Ray and West Main Streets in Sackets Harbor, call 315-646-1000 or go online to www.seawaytrail.com. # # #

The 2008 Birds of the Great Lakes Seaway Trail schedule
April 19 Landscaping for Hummingbirds & Other Flyers: Sue Gwise, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County, 1:30pm
April 24  The Birds of Braddock Bay & Flying Wild: David Semple, Bird Coalition of Rochester, 6pm
May 8 Adaptation, Form & Function: The Turkey Vulture, Red-tailed Hawk & Other Birds of Prey: Colleen Bernard from New York State Zoo at Thompson Park, 6pm
May 29 Almost Our National Bird: The Wild Turkey: Bruce Bailey, National Wild Turkey Federation Oswego River Chapter, 6pm
June 12 Why a WatchList: The Imperiled Species of the Seaway Trail, New York State & the World: Mike Burger, Audubon New York, 6pm

June 14 The Birds of Black Pond: Chris Lajewski, The Nature Conservancy, 10am w/free Woodland & Wetland Walk at Black Pond w/Eastern Lake Ontario Dune Steward Program at 2pm

July 10 A Birds Eye View: Photographer Ian Coristine at Clayton Opera House, 6pm, $10 (advance tickets: 315 686-2200)

July 24  Birding on Fort Drum Military Installation: Fort Drum Fish & Wildlife Program, 6pm

August 7 Hawk Watching & Derby Hill: Gerry Smith, Consulting Ecologist & Onondaga Audubon Society, 6pm

August 21 Handling Birds of Prey: Master Falconer Rick West with live raven, owl & falcon, 6pm
September 18 Journaling for Birders: Mark Baldwin, Roger Tory Peterson Institute of Natural History, 6pm
October 9 Our 1000 Islands Bald Eagle: On the Brink of Recovery? Bud Andress, Parks Canada (Ret.), 6pm
November 6 Christmas Bird Counts on the Seaway Trail: Geoff LeBaron, Audubon Science, 6pm. # # #